Chapter 16: The Frost Kingdom

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The ship rocked and swayed but Meathil stayed asleep, because of the warm body lying next to her. Eglanor slept next to her with his arms wrapped around her waist, his body covered her's creating warmth. She shifted with every movement of the boat, but never did she ever leave his arms. The night had been one she would remember, the warmth of his kiss. The way he touched her was a way she always yearned for him to. She remembered every detail, the venus skies with the stars above their head, the beautiful tone in his voice, the rolling waves in front of them. She always wished for it secretly, something she hid from even herself for a long time. Truthfully that battle with Eredhelil had changed her, it made her realize how much she needed him, how much she longed for him. For his touch, for his love, for just his presence with her at every waking moment. The ship moved and swayed all through the night, and she finally slept peacefully in Eglanor's arms.

~

The day was bright and she had a quite abrupt awake when Othes burst into her room to tell her something but stopped at the sight of her. She was not impressed with how Meathil was clinging to Eglanor, but the vice-captain did not make a comment about it. As she got dressed she noticed how nice Eglanor's outfit was, she hadn't noticed it before. Meathil dressed in her armor and she headed up with Eglanor to the main deck. Her steps made the deck creak, she climbed the stairs and was blinded by the daylight of the morning. Meathil set her sights on her bracket members all in a nice line, they wore their finest armor. Down the line it went, Othes, Deigil, Hyril, Hastel, Pengeth, Hatolel, Thennil, Lengeth, and Rivornor. The boy was in a lovely deep blue suit that had golden outlines, his black hair was slicked back and a book in his hand. Othes's lovely blonde hair flowed in the wind as her lovely armor shone under the sun. Her vice-captain was indeed a lovely girl, she would marry well, hopefully. Although Othes was gorgeous, she was also very strict, stubborn, serious, and quite emotionless. Next to her Deigil wore her black hair back in a nice braid that reached her lower back, her armor was the same as usual. Hyril was just as intimidating as ever, her height reached high and she had her hair loose, ready for battle at any time. Her sword was only a few inches away from the girls hand, she would not be caught off guard. Hastel and Pengeth both had their hair in twin braids, the blonde and brown locks were tightly bound. She looked to see Hatolel with her blonde hair cut short in the back with a few longer strands on the sides of her head. Thennil wore her hair down just like Hyril, and the armor she wore did not really prove the definition of armor very well. Lengeth had her bangs cut and her hair was wavy and down. She wore a nice green metal armor chest plate and some simple battle pants, her sword was nearby. Othes still looked at her with a grin on her face.

"So my dear captain, how was your night? Or should I ask how was your night with Eglanor?" Pengeth teased and giggled in the process. Jeez she was sure to be teased about this for the rest of the trip.

"It was just fine, now I would like to know why I was so rudely awaken by you Othes. You could have either knocked or slipped a note under the door."

"I am very sorry, I just um... Thought you would be alone... When I came in." Giggles aroused in the girls but Deigil, Rivornor, Hyril, and Othes stayed quiet. "I wanted to inform you that we were around an hour away from Ostwyn, which now would be half that time."

"Well, thank you. I hope we can impress the Queen, or at least survive to see another day. I want everyone on their guards, make sure no one gets hurt. Also, do not intervene or speak without my approval, I do not want to make any unwanted enemies." They all nodded in agreement. They knew what this meeting meant to everyone, meant to the queen. She could not afford to make any new enemies. She felt the air shift, it was colder, harder than the capital. The skies turned a dark blue and she noticed clouds of frost and snow. All around the sip they started to see wonderful flakes of ice, the flakes were beautifully designed. She knew that the continent was cold, but this was extremely cold, she felt herself shiver as the breezes of wind brushed against her skin. There was frost forming on her armor, it made the metal extremely chilly. The royal palace and capital were always warm unless it was the year of Preeniwae. The year rotations happened every year, and every year there would be a new omen. Venus went through a rotation of 5 years, Preeniwae, Gonkazi, Flqaui, Maniza, and Hãlhki. She was born the year of Hãlhki, the year represents royalty and love, and the weather is always a perfect mixture of warm and cold. This was the year of Flqaui, which meant there were many windy storms and the weather was breezy. It meant the capital got a little bit colder than usual, but not nearly this cold. She felt bad for the others who had more revealing armor than her, although she had a lot of metal on, so she didn't really know who to feel bad for. As she glanced around at how everyone was doing. Hastel, Deigil, Pengeth, and Hatolel were all huddled up together for warmth. Rivornor offered his coat to Lengeth who reluctantly accepted it, she looked like she was about to freeze to death. Hyril stood so still you would swear she was not alive, but as soon as Thennil started to shiver or cough she would rush over and cover the girl up. She seemed to like Thennil a lot, that wasn't that surprising though. Othes stood right next to her not shivering or moving at all, she stood in a protective and very regal stance. Meathil couldn't help but think that Othes was lonely at times, all the girl seemed to care about was discipline and her duty to the queen. It certianly wasn't a bad thing, although the girl could learn to have a little bit of fun every once and a while. She felt a hand on her shoulder and turned to see Eglanor standing behind her with his coat held out. She felt the warmth rise to her cheeks and nodded softly in approval. He placed his dark green coat over her shoulders, the coat was still warm from his body. It made her cheeks turn red and her heart start beating fast, but once she saw the look on Othes's face she straightened up her posture. Eglanor just smiled and gently laced the fingers of his right hand with her's, it was such a subtle movement that no one noticed it, she loved it though.

"We're coming up on Ostwyn! I can see the docks now!" Bellinil yelled to the rest of them. "I will be staying on the ship, but I have orders to take you to Shadowmount too, so I will not be leaving." Meathil looked ahead and saw what she thought was just ice, but in fact it was a castle. The palace was encased in ice and the skies dark blue reflected off of it. The port's docks were made of stone and the stone was covered in snow and frost. This world of ice and shadows, it must be an awful place to grow up in. There were hardly any plants or animals, and when there was, they always seemed deadly. "The Queen lives in that large ice palace over there, you will be escorted to it by someone. I don't know who the Queen is sending, but whoever she does, they will be important. Just a warning."

"Thank you Bellinil."

"Not at all, it's my job to inform you of the journey. And to escort you there, so there is no need for thanks." There was only a few feet in between them and the docks now, and she still didn't see anyone there. Meathil took a step closer to the railing, Eglanor moving with her. As she moved closer two figures appeared, one was a tall man with silvery skin and black hair, his eyes glowed yellow. He wore a heap of armor and on his back hung a large fur cape that he used to warm himself. Next to him seemed to be a woman, she was smaller and more lean. Her skin was also a silver color, it was just the Ostwyn races signature look, they always had silver skin and bright colored eyes. She wore a vail over her face covering it completely. But the woman's hair was white, very white, pure white. As they finally reached the docks the woman raised her hand in greeting, Meathil did the same back. "Good luck, captain."

"Thanks, make sure you don't freeze."

"I won't," Bellinil giggled and brought out a fur coat. Her bracket lined up behind her as they walked down the wooden ramp connecting the ship to the docks. The ramp had frost on it and every once and a while one of the girls would slip, the girl behind them would catch them and keep them straight up. Meathil led her bracket across the docks to the woman, she wore a long dress that was made of fine silk, it was thin silk. How could she stand this coldness? It was almost unbearable. Her attention was driven to the man who spoke in a low voice.

"I am head guard here, I have come from the Queen to escort you into the palace and to show you to your rooms. Her majesty would like to negotiate tomorrow, she feels you all need a rest." His expression did not change, but she felt the unease in his voice.

"Yes, that would be lovely, what is your name good warrior?" Meathil asked curiously, she genuinely wanted to know.

"Syson of the Ostwyn royal guards."

"Nice to meet you, I am Meathil of the Venus royal captains and this is my bracket. I was curious about something if you don't mind me asking," she said, this immediately got Syson's attention and his yellow eyes narrowed at her. She gave a small innocent smile that seemed to ward off any suspicion.

"Well, go ahead and ask it."

"I was curious, who is this lady here? I surely would love to get to know her, especially if she is to be escorting us also." Her question seemed to push some of his buttons. The guard seemed unpleased with her question, but she still stood with it. "Well?" She could feel Othes breathing down her neck, don't do it she would say, don't taunt them. But, she wanted to know, and taunting was just so much fun sometimes. The lady shifted her feet against the snow, she turned to Meathil and spoke.

"Oh but you already know me Meathil." No. It... It couldn't be. No.

"But, I thought, you... How?" She was speechless, she couldn't think, that voice. That hissing voice, that menacing grin that she saw underneath that veil. It couldn't be her.

"You know each other miss?" Syson asked the woman, she laughed a dark, devious laugh. "She will be escorting you, and you should address her as-"

"Oh Syson let me introduce myself, I want them to know me, personally." The woman hissed out her words, and her voice was full of darkness. With that the woman with the white hair gripped her veil. Meathil's heart raced, she couldn't think, how? The lady took off the veil to reveal her big, bright red eyes. No. "I am the Princess of Ostwyn. Her highness... Eredhelil."

The demon queen. The woman in the darkness. Eredhelil.

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